Just auditioned these here at home and they’re just not my bag at all, compared to my Revels m106s (which on paper are very similar in specs just a slightly different sensitivity rating and ported rather than sealed) they’re lifeless missing attack and drive especially when played at lower levels, I wouldn’t say flat as thats what they’re going for but for lack of a better word they just are “flat” but they are very clean. Maybe a sealed design doesn’t work in my room (suspended floor in a town house and plaster board walls) but honestly i don’t see what all the fuss is about.
A little bit of background the reason im auditioning is because I need a speaker that can sit closer to the wall (the powers that be have spoken) and the revels have so much energy they can sound a bit much close to the wall. So naturally i thought a sealed speaker might fit the bill. The room is around 4.5x3.2 meters and the speakers are placed on the short length of the room, we’re sitting approx a 1.5meters from them currently.
The revels offer far greater attack and insight and handle volume just as well, i would say the tweeter is about the same between the 2, but the Revels have that last bit more insight especially with tracks like “not made by design” by nothing but thieves. Then theres the imagining theres no comparison the ATC’s sound like a wall of sound in comparison. And this is where i have the Revels currently placed which is about 50cm into the room. The revels have a lot more bass energy at all fequancey’s than that of the ATC’s. BUT the ATC’s clearly go lower which is nice but not the end of the world. Moving the ATC’s back towards the wall (now at 20cm or so) improved the attack at no expense of air or treble and no muddiness was introduced as there a meter from the side walls
But Where do i go from from here I like the “punchy” “Airy” sound of the Revels m106. my auditon opinions that i narrowed down too are as follows
Active version of the ATC’s 19’s real top end of budget but i can seem the amp freeing up funds.
Neat xplorer (spec’s say these can sit very close to the wall and the what hi fi review pretty much followed there advice) though starting to hit the very top of my budget
Harbeth compact 7es People say they can work close to the wall
Are there any that i may have missed with the similar traits to the Revels?
Oh this is on the of a nap 200dr (its a shame people just jump over this to the 250 it really is a much better amp than the old 200) and I can assure you the amp is absolutely fine with these ATC’s speakers for those that alway post that question. Taking them window to rattling levels with no strain what so ever, and the amp is just slightly warm. Yes i have to turn up a little louder due to insensitivity ratings and differences but that’s all.
Don’t recommend me a 250dr its not on the menu at all, the 200dr is very capable in my room and drives anything ive thrown at it well. im just after a certain sound that the revels offer up.
Many thanks in advance a look forward to your suggestions.
I would ask how many hours the ATCs have on them as having owned 19’s and now 11’s they need around 200 hrs to loosen up when the music frees itself from the box and they are much more expressive and dynamic… my room is similar size and they sit 18cm from wall
I demoed those and quite a few others. We put a built in a wall unit where my towers used to stand, so I had to find a bookshelf that could sit close to the wall.
After a few failed in home demos with rear ports, not enough space. And a lot of high end bookshelves that left me wanting more… I had two final choices.
Harbeth 30’s. These sounded great and had a front port. Checked all my boxes, they were just more than I wanted to, but would, spend.
Guru q10. Somebody told me about these in the old Naim forum because they were made to be close to a wall. The only issue was I’m in the states and I could only buy direct from Sweden. I spoke to the company and they said I could buy and if I didn’t like they would cover return shipping. So I pulled the trigger. For our unique situation, they rock. Bass is full, deep and accurate. If you close your eyes, they sound like small towers.
I listen to jazz, hip hop, house, classic rock, and a whole lot more depending on the mood. These handle it all. Too many of the other speakers I listened to would fail at certain genres. For example, B&W’s had the weirdest bass sound with Rihanna and Stevie Wonder.
Honesty, order then direct, they gave me a few bucks off on the Grey color, which is what I wanted. And ask if they will cover return shipping.
You will not be disappointed.
Thanks Johnny ill give them a look.
No Idea but they look like they have been round the block so i suspect they’ve had a good run in but you may be right, ive got them for another week or so ill see what happens i guess
You could try inserting foam plugs in the bass reflex ports if you want to sit your speakers closer to the wall. This is an effective solution recommended by Dynaudio.
Hey can I ask what size and brand stands did you use with the 19’s. I was looking at the Atacama 500xls. Or is there better that I’m unaware of thanks in advance
Mine are an old pair of atacama but 500mm also . Single heavy central column half filled with sand…
@twinkle-toes I’m using Custom Design FS104 24" Speaker Stands, as recommended by my dealer. I was told these open stand are best suited to the 19s
As a little update, I’ll be sending the ATC’s back they just don’t have what I’m looking for (must be the only person that doesn’t like them LOL). Think ill give the Neat xplorer ago next i think and we’ll go from there, i’ll post my thoughts here when and if i can get my hands on them as there doesn’t seem to be a lot written here about them and my ramblings may help somebody in the future.
Sorry to hear you didn’t like them. I’ve had SCM 40’s for five years and currently am auditioning 19A’s. Both are extremely good speakers. I drive my 40’s with SN2 + PSU and they work fine with it. I’d think 200DR would drive passive 19’s properly. It might just be that ported speakers work better in your space.
I’d maybe look towards Spendor or even PMC, they both work very well close to the wall.
The 19s need a good 150 hours to loosen up… and need a bit of space around them… they are not happy very close to walls.
I find open stands work best, high mass stands just don’t seem to gel with them. I once tried FS104s with my 19s and they were terrible… horrible treble smearing and congested lower mid.
I currently use Russ Andrews Torlyte stand with the 19s… They look the part and visually match the speaker and sound pretty good… upper mids and treble shockingly good.
With my earlier ATCs I used SomethingSolid stands … they were superb too, it’s just they are not an ideal match for the shape of the 19mk2 cabinet.
@Simon-in-Suffolk these are the open version of the Custom FS104 I have. Are these the stands you mean? I’m not hearing treble smearing or congested mids with these
£695 for these Russ Andrews Torlyte stands? Do they really make any difference to SQ? They’re not a great match for my Satin Black 19s
Path, how do you like the active 19s vs passive 40s?
No those look different… mine had a column that was mass filled… do enjoy them
Yes those are the ones I have… you can buy on a trial basis I believe, i think if you don’t get on with them you can send back. I have come to the conclusion I prefer wooden stands over metal ones… ok perhaps the bass is a little softer than the very best metal open frame stands, but the upper mid and treble sounds so much more clear without any spot lighting…(with the heavy ATCs)… BTW I directly couple the speaker by laying on the upper Torlyte plinth… again found best through trial and error.
Chuckle… yes if you have satin black I would look at alternatives